To Process Work or Not to Be?

Shakespeare is dead. He can't change his oeuvre . Process work (pw) is alive and thriving. It can change. In fact, it does. So what triggered my thoughts in this comparison of Hamlet and pw?

All Shakespeare's plays are in 5 acts. No exceptions. Similar to our 5 days' pw labs.The journey is pretty similar - Introduction; Rising Action; the Zenith of Action; Falling Action and the Closure. Each act is akin to the progression of a day in pw. But, in pw we have abbreviated this cycle to 4 or even 4½ days. Shakespeare is stuck with the 5-Act format.

I compare pw to Hamlet as it is one of Willy's better known tragedies and the entire drama (as in a lot of his tragedies) is around pure emotions. In the case of Hamlet, it is indecision, doubt, authority issues, lack of confrontation, high IQ but action paralysis, poor self worth where he believes even Ophelia cannot truly love him, ghosts which haunt him literally and psychologically, high expectations of another's behaviour from his perspective and several others. Too many subtleties to be enumerated here.

If we look at the pw Triangle of Well Being, Hamlet's thoughts and feelings are well connected. In fact his vacillations come from intense feeling and thoughts and seesawing between the two. Action on these is totally missing. The only physical action is his dueling, something which is his skill. But this physical action leads to tragedy and death of every major character in the play. The internal movement required for action to conclude a thought or execute a feeling is not present through the 5 acts.

Let us end with a rhetorical question... if Hamlet had gone through a pw lab how may the play have changed?

Mehroo Kotval
Member, Governing Council